M. R. Jayakar

Other names: 

Mukund Ramrao Jayakar


Dorchester Hotel W1K 1QA
United Kingdom
51° 30' 40.6872" N, 0° 8' 49.9128" W
Date of birth: 
01 Jan 1873
Precise DOB unknown: 
Country of birth: 
Date of death: 
10 Mar 1959
Location of death: 
Bombay, India
Date of 1st arrival in Britain: 
01 Jan 1903
Precise 1st arrival date unknown: 
Dates of time spent in Britain: 

1903-5, 1931, 1932, 1938


London – Carlton Hotel and Dorchester Hotel (1931)


M. R. Jayakar was a barrister, Federal Court Judge (1937-9) and member of the Bombay Legislative Assembly. He had been called to the Bar at Lincoln’s Inn in London in 1905. In the 1930s he sent his son, Jayapal, to study in Oxford, having failed to gain admission to Oxford in the early twentieth century himself.

Jayakar became heavily involved in nationalist politics in India. He was known for his sympathies with the Hindu Mahasabha, clashing with Mohammed Ali Jinnah. He was a member of the Hindu Missionary Society in Bombay and leader of the Swaraj Party for a short time, resigning in 1925. In 1930, Jayakar and Tej Bahadur Sapru were involved in negotiations between Congress and the Government when Motilal Nehru and other Congress members were imprisoned. These negotiations are said to have led to the Gandhi-Irwin Pact of March 1931 whereby Congress members were released from prison in return for the discontinuation of non-cooperation; the salt tax was removed and Congress members would be represented at the next Round Table Conference. Jayakar was a member of the Judicial Privy Council in London and attended the Round Table Conference in London in 1931.

Jayakar was known for his educationist and philanthropist work. He received an honorary DCL from Oxford University in 1938, upon the recommendation of E. J. Thompson. He was Vice-Chancellor of Poona University from 1948 upon its foundation, until his retirement in 1955.


Isaac Foot, M. K. Gandhi, Lord Irwin, Jayapal Jayakar (son), M. A. Jinnah, George Lansbury, Sir Francis Low, Jawaharlal Nehru, Motilal Nehru, Lala Lajpat Rai, Tej Bahadur Sapru, E. J. Thompson, Sir Evelyn Wrench.

Involved in events: 
Published works: 

Social Reform and Social Service (Madras: Theosophical Society, 1917)

(ed.) Kirtikar, V. J., Studies in Vedanta (Bombay: Taraporevala, 1924)

The Story of My Life (Bombay: Asia Publishing House, 1958)

Contributions to periodicals: 

Letter to Times of India, 22 May 1931, criticising India Society and promotion of Bengal school of art

Secondary works: 

Bakshi, S. R. (ed.), M. R. Jayakar (New Delhi: Anmol, 1994)

Brown, Judith M., Gandhi’s Rise to Power (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1972)

Dhanki, Joginder Singh (ed.), Perspectives on Indian National Movement: Selected Correspondence of Lala Lajpat Rai (New Delhi: National Book Organisation, 1998)

Israel, Milton, Communications and Power: Propaganda and the Press in the Indian Nationalist Struggle (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1994)

Kulkarni, V. B., M. R. Jayakar (New Delhi: Government of India, 1970)

Lahiri, Shompa, Indians in Britain: Anglo-Indian Encounters, Race and Identity, 1880-1939 (London: Frank Cass, 2000)

Mitter, Partha, The Triumph of Modernism (London: Reaktion, 2007)

Nehru, Jawaharlal, An Autobiography: With Musings on Recent Events in India (London: Bodley Head, 1936)

Archive source: 

Portrait (taken 8 September 1931 by Bassano) and portrait of son (1939-40), National Portrait Gallery, London

Letter to Attlee, Attlee Papers, Bodleian Library, Oxford

Correspondence with E. J. Thompson, Thompson Papers, Bodleian Library, Oxford

Correspondence with George Lansbury, LSE Archives, London

Letter to Friends House, Mss Eur C170, Asian and African Studies Reading Room, British Library, St Pancras

Files relating to conversations with Congress leaders, and relating to the Round Table Conference, Asian and African Studies Reading Room, British Library, St Pancras

Papers, National Archives of India, Delhi